Wales - Land Of Saints And Scholars?

November 9, in 'Saints of the Isles '(Celtic Prayer Book Volume 2) is for All Saints of Wales. On that day I shall lead a half day for the Church in Wales' St. Asaph Diocese Spirituality and Healing Group at Dean's Library, St. Asaph on 'Gathering Threads: Renewing the parish community with inspiration from our Celtic and monastic roots'.

Saturday 6 November is Saint Illtyd's Day. Sunday 7 November at 12.0 noon at Penmon Priory, Anglesey, founded by St. Seiriol in the 6th c. , Richard Adams takes his First Vows there followed by lunch with community members at nearby Llandonna.who run a B&B retreat house. I shall be resident at St. Beuno's Spirituality Centre, near St. Asaph. Below is a synopsis of my day with St. Asapah clergy and healers.

God has called us to parish ministry. The church has become marginalized. Many who seek spirituality bypass the church because they feel it puts them in a 'box' that does not relate to this quest. Some who remain in the church resist change - they are comfortable within their familiar 'box'.

Parish priests are pastors - they don't like to upset their flock and they provide for their needs. They are Christians - they want to reach out to the population. So they try to do both. This can create overload, conflict, stress, misunderstanding, half-heartedness or resignation.

That is our dilemma. Is there light for us from the Gospels and from our founding apostles in Wales? In Luke 16: 1-12 Jesus says in effect 'Learn how to be as astute for God's kingdom as people in the world of business are for their little kingdoms - particularly in the making of friends.' The Christian apostles of Wales made friends first of all with their large extended families - their tribe or kingdom. The early Celtic Christians had the vision of these becoming lands of saints and scholars.

So we will do a hitchiker's power-point guide through ten features of our early Christian story which hold lessons for our present time of transition. I call this 'The House that John Built'. All will become clear.... Except for you, dear Blogger, but you could book a 'House that John Built' symposium for your area.

Posted at 03:20am on 5th November 2010
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